COLUMBIA, S.C. – Governor Henry McMaster today signed Executive Order 2022-31, which formalizes the governor’s efforts to coordinate the future roll-out of the state’s electric vehicle infrastructure. The governor’s order prioritizes the state’s efforts to recruit electric vehicle-related businesses to South Carolina by training the state’s workforce to be prepared for the jobs related to the industry and establishing a “one-stop-shop” at the South Carolina Department of Commerce (Commerce) for businesses interested in investing in the state.
The governor’s executive order also creates an Interagency Working Group tasked with working collaboratively with stakeholders and local governments to develop a comprehensive plan regarding the strategic deployment of electric vehicle-related resources and infrastructure across the state. The Working Group will be focused primarily on developing a plan for strategically placing electric vehicle charging infrastructure on South Carolina’s interstates and roadways.
The Working Group is made up of the following agencies:
· South Carolina Department of Transportation
· Office of Regulatory Staff
· South Carolina Department of Commerce
· South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (SCDEW)
· South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles
· South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control
· State Fiscal Accountability Authority
“The only way South Carolina has been able to maintain its status as an automotive industry leader for nearly three decades is by strategically adapting as the industry innovates,” said Gov. Henry McMaster. “As the industry continues to move towards electric vehicles, South Carolina will move along with it – working to ensure that our state will continue to be seen as the ideal place for manufacturers and suppliers to do business. Along with these investments comes good-paying jobs that our people will be ready to take on.”
Commerce will designate an “Electric Vehicle Coordinator” who will become the state’s “one-stop-shop” for all things related to the electric vehicle industry. Along with creating a website providing information about all the state’s resources and opportunities in the sector, the Coordinator will be the primary point of contact with the business community and industry stakeholders on electric vehicle-related issues. Those issues may include economic investment, workforce development, emerging technologies, and infrastructure, and the Coordinator will connect interested parties with the appropriate state agencies to answer questions and facilitate further communication.
SCDEW will conduct a supply-gap analysis of the electric vehicle ecosystem by working with the business community, industry stakeholders, education providers, and other state agencies and departments, to evaluate electric vehicle-specific occupations and the projected demand for any relevant training, credentials, or certifications. The agency will explore opportunities to enhance the state’s workforce development policies to specifically address the needs of the electric vehicle industry. The agency will also identify and report to the governor and the General Assembly any recommended statutory or regulatory changes need to address these specific needs.
South Carolina is currently home to over 500 automotive companies and 72,000 autoworkers. The industry has a $27 billion economic impact in the state.